During the recent 33rd ASEAN Summit in Singapore, national leaders discussed regional and international affairs and held prioritized discussions concerning the events in Rakhine State. The ASEAN leaders admitted that the Rakhine State issue is complex and sensitive and voiced their support for Myanmar’s efforts. They said they would actively provide constructive cooperation in creating a good environment for returnees from Bangladesh and in promoting stability, development and harmony between the communities in Rakhine State. At a time when ASEAN leaders are providing assistance for Rakhine State in the true spirit of solidarity, it is unfortunate to hear about the draft resolution on human rights in Myanmar submitted by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the European Union (EU) at the Third Committee meeting of the 73rd United Nations General Assembly three days ago. The resolution is one-sided, biased, devoid of any constructive intent, politicized, and does not reflect the positive political and socio-economic development in Myanmar. It is a clear manifestation of the hostility and dictatorial intent of the co-sponsors of the resolution on a soft target. The sensational narrative of the draft resolution seems intent on increasing international pressure against Myanmar. It creates mistrust and further increases the polarization among the different communities in Rakhine and between Myanmar and the international community. Adopting another ill-intentioned, selective and politically motivated resolution will not help the Myanmar Government’s efforts in resolving the issue of Rakhine State, but would rather lead to further polarization and escalation of tensions among different religious communities in the country. The Myanmar Permanent Representative U Hau Do Suan delivered a statement at the 73rd UN General Assembly, calling for the UN to promote and advocate for peace, harmony and reconciliation, not hatred, mistrust or polarization. The exact words of the Permanent Representative were, “The people of Myanmar are united as ever under the leadership of State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar’s relentless efforts to building peace, the rule of law, national reconciliation and development for all 54 million people. We shall strive with unwavering determination to achieve democracy with the support and good will of our friends near and far.” No matter the nature of the obstacle impeding upon Myanmar, we will continue forward with courage and unfaltering spirit. This stance will be adopted not only for addressing the Rakhine issue but also for the entire country’s peace and development concerns. We, the citizens of Myanmar, will join hands with each other and with our friends, associate countries and ASEAN countries, as we move forward with tireless vigour in promoting peace, human rights and development and protection of our sovereignty.
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